By Senior Airman Harry Brexel
19th Airlift Wing Public Affairs
A brand new C-130J aircraft delivered to Little Rock Air Force Base on June 20 marks the beginning of a modern legacy of global reach capabilities.
With this aircraft delivery, which is the final C-130J to arrive from the Lockheed Martin facility in Marietta, Ga., the 19th Airlift Wing is the third U.S. Air Force active-duty unit to complete its transition from the H-model to the newer J-model aircraft.
Known as “The Home of Combat Airlift,” the 19th Airlift Wing began transitioning from older C-130H cargo aircraft to newer C-130J models in 2004. The ongoing airframe conversion enables Airmen to improve tactical airlift abilities.
“The C-130J brings combat power and modernization to the forefront against our adversaries,” said Gen. Carlton D. Everhart II, Air Mobility Command commander, who personally delivered the commemorative C-130J. “The capabilities this aircraft brings is truly amazing.”
The new J-model cargo airframe offers a longer fuselage with additional pallet positions for added airlift capacity, an updated cockpit with digital avionics, more efficient engines and propellers, which increase range and speed and many other improvements.
The C-130J routinely enables 19th Airlift Wing Airmen to quickly supply humanitarian airlift relief to disaster victims and airdrop supplies and troops into the heart of contingency operations in hostile areas of Central Asia, South America and the Horn of Africa.
“Little Rock Air Force Base Airmen are leading the force on C-130J total integration,” said Maj. Justin Hinrichs, 41st Airlift Squadron assistant operations officer. “The J-model is simultaneously utilized by four different U.S. Air Force Major Commands here. The Team Little Rock family is made up of units representing the Air Mobility Command, Air Education and Training Command, Arkansas Air National Guard, Air Force Reserve Command and Air Combat Command.”
New C-130J aircraft will continue to be delivered to other units in the U.S. Air Force as well as to international coalition partners. Modernizing NATO air mobility fleets will enable American armed forces to continue to deploy anywhere in the world at any time, and keep them supplied.
“We are the force provider of choice because we will be anywhere, anytime, and at any part of the world in a moment’s notice,” Everhart said. “This is the sheer power Air Mobility Command brings to our nation.”